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the endangered c: playing with language, typography, space


A unique combination of monoku (Jim Kacian), paper art (Terry Ann Carter) and critique (Claudia Brefeld) results in a new approach to haiga, the ancient Japanese art form combining text and image


This unique book was created on the occasion of Haiku North America 2021 for and (partly) by HNA Coordinator Terry Ann Carter. Carter selected 41 monoku by poet Jim Kacian as stepping off points for her original paper constructions, a marriage of text and image that offers a fascinating new take on the ancient art of haiga. Claudia Brefeld considers this new direction in general terms, and also offers specific comments on half a dozen of the pieces. The result is this full-color art book, an original contribution to the paired genres of haiku and haiga.

“If you look at the history and the specialities of monoku and collage, you will come to the interesting conclusion that both genres are amazingly different and similar at the same time — and can therefore complement and expand each other excellently due to their complexities and ambiguities.

Jim Kacian and Terry Ann Carter, both masters of their respective genres, unerringly and creatively explore new boundaries with their joint works in this book, and yet — or precisely because of this — allow the spark of poetry to jump over in new and surprising ways. Both monoku and collage seem to bring together fragments of this world here, the “traces” of their origins remain visible sometimes only imaginable, at the same time narrative lines are interrupted . . . the viewer’s imagination becomes part of the artistic process.

The deliberate omission (elision) in monoku and possible free spaces (ma) in collages are two techniques that can astonishingly complement and enrich each other in their interplay. Seen in this light, the works in this book certainly correspond to the overall conception of haiga.”

— from the “General Introduction” by Claudia Brefeld

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